Tuesday, May 23, 2006

…or You Could Choose to Have a Career

I've had a great deal on my mind since returning my niece to my brother (who is now entering his fourth migraine-free week, which is unbelievable). Things have been said to me, and there's a purple elephant breathing heavily into the phone every time my best friend and I talk on the phone, but of course we're ignoring it as well as we can. We need to talk about it, we need to talk about A's vasectomy, but neither of us can bring ourselves to start the debate, and I'm tired.

So today I will talk about my in-laws.

We went to lunch last weekend with my in-laws. It was my husband's step-mom's 60th birthday and it was great family-political capital to make the long drive out to Galena, IL to join them. We enjoyed browsing the shops, walked into the glass shop that the family in front of us skipped because little Timmy might break something, and had a lovely time.

When we met with the family for dinner, the three hellions were already at it. Bulky toys that had no business being at the dinner table were flying all over the place, the children fighting over whose turn it was to play with the yellow Power Ranger, and it was loud, so loud. There was a lot of baby talk due to M's very pregnant belly -- she's due any day now, and I sat silent for much of it, as the other sisters talked childbirth and bringing home baby.

After some talk about labor pain being hereditary, I guess I made a face or something, because M asked "are you worried about the pain?" "It's not that bad," said J with a smile. I laughed uncomfortably. J's husband then alluded to A's kids and mine, afterward saying "unless you choose to have careers instead," which I thought was funny. I think her husband has had me/us figured out for awhile -- maybe I leave the room too quickly when his boys are being irritating and loud, or maybe I just never talk about it and that's what did it. However, he's the only one.

I was intrigued, though, that someone recognized my main concern. I want a career -- I cannot do a career well AND raise a child well. It's not possible. After Ron's comment, A immediately launched into telling him about our business plans and made no commentary about babies. But that wasn't enough.

"When these guys have kids" became somewhat of a theme. "Until these guys have kids," we'll never appreciate how wonderful our mothers were. "Until these guys have kids," we won't understand what sacrifice means. "Until these guys have kids..." ad nauseum. To which we replied, "....."

After M's shower, I remarked that J would either get the hint or start pushing harder. Ladies and gentlemen, the pushing has begun. And I can't take much more.

No comments: